Previous to this time, Jabez School has been operating under the gracious umbrella of Sherman Avenue UMC, Madison, Wisconsin. We will continue to keep working with Sherman Avenue and other congregations that have been receiving donations on behalf of Jabez School, These churches, including Wesley UMC, are extremely important to the vibrancy of Jabez and Jabez students, teachers, staff, local board members and Jabez School Board of Directors USA and all are most grateful. This school could not have been what it is today without each person and each church. Your tireless effort and gifts are wonderful. Many many thanks!
In the school year 2022-2023 our classes began in October and will run for nine months. The classes run from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. each weekday. Twenty-three teachers and support staff are paid. Jabez School also has a local school board who is a support. On the table in the narthex you can find pictures of some of the activities and people of Jabez School. Note the smiles on their faces!
Unfortunately Jabez enrollment has been slowed considerable from previous years due to the current economic and food crises in Liberia. Today about 138 students are enrolled compared to more than double that in 2021, Having enough money to pay fees has become unreachable for many of our potential families. Our families and potential families are in need of prayers for patience and financial stability. Life is getting harder by the day. And this is true for all of Liberian families, not just those at Jabez.
School enrollment is noted at the end of each school year. That enrollment number will indicate how many were able to finish the year and go on to the next class. For instance in 2021-2022 a total of 288 students were enrolled at the beginning. Only 232 students made it to the year’s end. The reasons for the decrease are varied. Some students dropped out for unknown reasons. Still others dropped out because they were unable to make the desired grade points for promotion and most dropped out because of the inability to pay.
Jabez School’s tuition and fees are lower than most. We have scholarships and work-grants and sponsorships which are dependent upon donations given to us. Each teacher is given the privilege of having one child attend school free. As minimal as Jabez School’s tuitions and fees are, most of the parents just cannot afford! them.
The great number of our students who drop out do so because of the inability to pay his/her fees. That runs counter to our desires and values. However, as an organization we are accountable for the financial stability of the organization. We need financial help to be able to mold the minds of our students, to nurture them in Christian love, and to shape their lives for the future in the name of Jesus Christ. We are thankful for the gifts of money that we receive so that more children can be given the opportunity to attend Jabez School.
Rev. Jakes and the Board of Directors of Jabez extend to you at Wesley their sincere thanks and their deep appreciation for what has been done at Wesley to help Jabez serve as it does in Liberia.
Another challenge we hope to meet head-on is a meal program. Most, if not all, of the children and staff come to school without having any breakfast at home. We know the importance of adequate food, that hunger is an enemy of human life and development. We know a child’s learning ability and their capacity to learn is impeded when food is not adequate. We are working to develop a food program to help in this area.
If your heart is moved to make a donation, please label your gift for Jabez and place it in the offering plate or send it to Wesley UMC. If you know of grants that may be available to Jabez, let Vernita Green or Rev. Jakes know.